Makeup artist and Beauty Squad member Lauren Cosenza supports trying anything in the quest for self-expression. Each month she pushes our cosmetic boundaries beyond the beauty comfort zone. In this edition she tries out the bold eye shadow look that has emerged as one of the hottest makeup trends on the catwalks.
Traditionally known for black, Donna Karan gave beauty journalists and aficionados a surprise when she sent models down her fall 2012 runway with eyes made up in a vibrant red oxblood shadow. The hue turned into the color of the season, popping up in presentations from New York to Paris. Oxblood has now turned into pink on the spring 2013 catwalks, with designers from Karan to Creatures of the Wind (above), Chris Benz and Bibhu Mohapatra rimming models' eyes in fuchsia. Now I’m a girl’s girl who thinks most things are more fun and more fabulous in pink, from my cell phone case to my polka-dot luggage. Give me a pink pout or a flushed pink cheek any and every day. But pink eye? Not so much. Naturally, I had to try it!
To give this dare a fair shot, I enlisted a friend, the talented celebrity makeup artist Gabriel Almodovar. Gabriel is always up for something edgy and unconventional and always able to make it look wearable and glamorous. So he came over with his brushes, and we got to work.
Although Gabriel was making up my full face, he advised to start with the area that may be the most messy—in this case, the eyes—because there could be fallout. He first primed my lids by patting on NARS Concealer. To create the perfect shade of electric pink, he then custom-blended two blushes—MAC Blush in Full Fuchsia and NYX HD Studio Photogenic Grinding Blush in English Rose. He brushed on the bright color from my lash lines to my creases and under my eyes. He rimmed my eyes in my favorite liner, L’Oréal Extra-Intense Liquid Pencil Eyeliner in Carbon Black, and coated my lashes in one of his favorites, Maybelline Volum’ Express the Colossal in Glam Black.
He then moved onto my foundation, using Jouer Matte Moisture Tint two shades darker and two shades lighter than my actual skin tone to softly sculpt and contour my face. This red-carpet technique involves applying the lighter shade to the center of the face (the forehead, bridge of the nose, cheeks and chin) and applying the darker shade to the outside and hollows of the face (the hairline, under the cheekbones and the jawline).
Gabriel dusted Dior Diorskin Shimmer Star in Rose Diamond as a highlighter over my cheekbones, the bridge of my nose and my cupid’s bow. Using a flat foundation brush and small quick motions, he then swept on Maybelline Dream Bouncy Blush in Pink Frosting.
In keeping with the high-fashion, super-editorial look, Gabriel used a fingertip to “neutralize the natural lip color,” first dabbing on NARS Concealer and then YSL Rouge Pur Couture lipstick in Luminous Fresh Peach Pink.
Here I am in the finished look, standing beside Gabriel:
I wore my pink eye shadow look out in New York City on a date with my boyfriend to dinner at The Smith and to the popular neighborhood bar Tom & Jerry’s. My boyfriend, who had watched the transformation, had his reservations. Surprisingly he came around. “It’s actually very cool," he said. At The Smith, I caused quite a scene with girls’ eyes following me from the door to the bar to the table. They seemed baffled in the not-sure-if-I-love-it-or-hate-it way that is how extreme trends are usually initially perceived. Later at Tom & Jerry’s, our favorite bartender made a beeline over to us. He loved the look. “It’s the kind of look that is striking from across the room in a bar or club,” he said, adding, “You don’t normally wear so much makeup, Lauren.” I had to smile, as I’ve long believed that many men only think it’s a lot of makeup if it’s a lot of color—and this was, undoubtedly, a LOT of color.
I chatted with Gabriel about how to further experiment with the trend:
Why do you think this trend is carrying over from fall 2012 into spring 2013?
The look is so different from other eye makeup looks that have been created as of late. I think it’s fun and impactful.
So how should a woman play with this trend if she is feeling bold and experimental?
If you’re feeling bold, saturate the eye area with the color—pull the color upward, outward and downward and pair it with a very soft cheek, light matte skin and a completely nude lip.
What advice would you give to a woman who is intrigued by the look, but wants to test it out gradually?
If you’re feeling just a little intrigued, you could try a two-tone approach with the red or pink smudged only underneath the eyes along the lower lash lines.
Can you give some more of your pro tips to make it wearable?
One tip is to pair the pink or red or salmon—we’ve seen many versions of it—with a dark, fully rimmed, smudged liner. Unlike the way we’ve seen it on the runway, layer on the mascara on the top and bottom! This is what we did on you.
Another way is to add a darker color eye shadow, like dark gray or brown or black, to the outer corners. This brings the look back to reality by adding depth to the eyes. Really you can wear any color, even those not found on the face naturally, if you just marry your brights with neutrals.
How should the rest of the face be made up to best feature this eye look?
The complexion must be completely flawless so the focus is all on the eyes.
Do you think some beauty trends are best left on the runway? Or should women have more fun with their makeup and overall beauty and style?
It truly depends on how adventurous a woman is with her makeup. I encourage people to get out of their makeup rut. Makeup is all about having fun. You can always wipe it off.
Would your celebrity clientele embrace this pink eye shadow trend?
As a makeup artist working with celebs, you can introduce trends but they have to be consistent with your client’s image. So it would depend on who. We’ll have to see who wears it next!
Photos: Karl Prouse/Catwalking/Getty Images (Creatures of the Wind); Lauren Cosenza and Gabriel Almodovar (courtesy of Cosenza)